MAKING CANADA HOME: THE SYRIAN REFUGEE RESETTLEMENT INITATIVE - TWO YEARS AFTER ARRIVAL
As the organization responsible for the resettlement of 2,200 government-assisted Syrian refugees to Toronto, COSTI undertook a follow up telephone survey in the Fall of 2018 to learn more about their resettlement process and how they are doing one and a half years since the last survey was conducted in the Fall of 2016.
Three hundred and fifty-one (351) adults who are Head of Households participated in the survey; representing 82% of the 430 Syrian families resettled by COSTI. Interviews were conducted by phone by Arabic-speaking staff.
This document provides an overview of the challenges and successes of Syrian newcomers living in the Greater Toronto Area, as well as key findings for additional supports and service improvements.
The survey indicates that Syrian newcomers are doing better than anticipated after two and a half years, particularly given the difficult circumstances surrounding their departure from their country. Sixty-three percent (63%) continue in English classes, 50% have had paid employment, they are connecting with the broader community as 73% have made friends who are not Syrian, 96% of their children participate in school activities including afterschool activities such as sports, 75% report that their families’ emotional health has improved since coming to Canada and 100% want to become Canadian citizens. These are all healthy signs of a journey towards successful integration.